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iPad pitches Apple onto world PC top table

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Fellow market watchers may not include the iPad in Apple's computer sales figures, but Canalys does, and it reckons doing so puts the Mac maker into world's top five.

Looking back at Q2, the three million or more tablets Apple shipped during the quarter amounted to six per cent of the portable computer segment, Canalys said.

According to Apple - which is, in any case, the source of analysts' numbers - it shipped a fraction under 3.5 million Macs in Q2. Add the iPad to that total and you get 6.7m computing devices.

That's enough to catapult the company past Toshiba, Asus and others in the world PC vendor league table, as maintained by market watcher Gartner. That puts Apple in fifth place with a market share of just over eight per cent.

Sure, it's still behind HP (17.4 per cent), Acer (13 per cent), Dell (12.4 per cent) and Lenovo (ten per cent), but it's within grasping distance of the tail-enders.

All the evidence suggests that iPads aren't simply being used as large iPod Touches, though that's clearly part of their appeal. Rather a lot of folk are using iPads for the same jobs they might have previously put netbooks too.

We'd argue analysts shouldn't ignore the iPad - as Gartner, for one, does - as a device that's somehow not a true computing device.

What do you think? ®

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